Summer Winds

Summer in Salamanca feels just as summer should. When you are a kid and you picture summer changing things, if only for the few months before you are trapped in a classroom again, that is what I feel is happened here. The dry heat makes for lovely walks in the shade, and coffees under the stretched umbrellas that crowd the pedestrian boulevards in this tourist town. Air conditioning is pretty rare, so all the windows are open catching the cool breezes. Normally, the population here is students and elderly, with a scattering of tourist groups and young families. In the month of August, however, all the students have gone home. I haven’t seen as many elderly, and I wonder if the heat has something to do with it. The dynamic here has changed. I have changed, as well, so perhaps I am noticing new things. There is a woman who lives in my building who sings opera. Fresh from a visit home and thawed from the long winter, I find myself wondering about her in ways I was too tired to think about before. What does she look like? How old is she? Would she want to be my friend? Does she have a dog I could play with? There are several tenants with dogs, and I want to play with all of them. The voice that echoes in our marbled staircase has me curious. What does this next year in Salamanca look like? What stories will I gather (and hopefully be more disciplined about posting)? Why do all my cakes burn on top and stay gooey in the middle (I adjusted for altitude this time)? Who will I meet and become friends or just acquaintances with? I don’t know, but I will soak up the sunlight and warmth while it is given to me.